Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.


Priefer to be named special teams coordinator

Posted by: under Vikings, Lions, NFC, Packers, Leslie Frazier, Leslie Frazier Updated: January 18, 2011 - 8:22 PM

Mike Singletary confirmed Tuesday that he will join the Vikings as linebackers coach and assistant head coach to Leslie Frazier. Turns out Singletary isn't the only one who has agreed to become a part of Frazier's coaching staff but has yet to be announced.

Mike Priefer, who spent the past two seasons as the Denver Broncos special teams coordinator, is expected to be named to the same job with the Vikings. An announcement could be coming this week and possibly as early as Wednesday.

Priefer will replace Brian Murphy, who was left in limbo by the Vikings after Frazier was named to the full-time job. Murphy was hired Monday as the special teams coordinator for the Carolia Panthers.

Priefer, who has 16 years of coaching experience at the pro and collegiate level, is the son of well-known special teams coach Chuck Priefer, who worked for the Green Bay Packers, San Diego Chargers and Detroit Lions during his three NFL stops that spanned 17 years. Chuck Priefer also coached at the collegiate level for 12 seasons.

Mike Priefer, 44, attended Navy and flew helicopters as a Naval officer for six years (1989-94) after his graduation. He began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Navy in 1994, working with the special teams the first season before coaching linebackers and defensive line in 1995 and '96.

He also had stops at Youngstown State University (1997-98), Virginia Military Institute (1999) and Northern Illinois University (2000-01) before moving to the NFL and becoming an assistant special teams coach with Jacksonville in 2002.

Priefer served in the same capacity with the New York Giants (2003-05) before taking over as coordinator of Kansas City's special teams in 2006. He was with the Chiefs through 2008 and joined the Broncos the following season.

According to his bio on the Broncos website, entering this season in his eight-year NFL coaching career, Priefer had worked with special teams units that had accounted for a total of 11 scores other than field goals/extra points with four kickoff return touchdowns, four punt return touchdowns, one blocked punt touchdown, one touchdown on a botched field goal attempt and one safety on a blocked punt. His units also have totaled 15 blocked kicks (7 punts, 6 field goals, 2 extra points).

 

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